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Old 01-15-2005, 10:07 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Cutting Frame for shorter wheelbase

I already posted this in the newbie forum, but apperently no one there knows, so: Is it a bad idea to cut inbetween 1-2 feet out of a 85' dodge long bed frame to shorten up the wheelbase? The frame would be boxed and all welded up with a arc welder using 7018 rods. Also, if the frame is boxed, what is teh best way to run all of the lines?
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Old 01-15-2005, 11:01 AM   #2 (permalink)
 
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That's a reasonable thing to do. The limit to the quality of the result is your skill. I'd take out more than that though. like get the wheel base down to 115". Cut the front and back down to get rid of overhang.

It is illegal most places to alter the frame in a critical spot, and have it licenced as the same vehicle. I doubt anyone will notice, care, or know it's illegal, though.

Running the lines can be as easy or hard as you want to make it. If you want to make it nice, come up with a good way to get them inside the frame. You have to make them not rub on stuff though, because after a while the frame will cut through break tubes. To do it fast, just use your imagination. Bailing wire, zip ties, those stock plastic clips, what ever.

That truck is way to big to wheel. Cut it down to be a really heavy Jeep.
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Old 01-15-2005, 11:03 AM   #3 (permalink)
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As long as you know what your doing then No its not a problem. Leave the lines where they are at on the frame or run them on the outside of the boxed part. Its realy up to you and how you want it. IMO on the inside where they will be safe.
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Old 01-15-2005, 11:19 AM   #4 (permalink)
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stock wheelbase is about 130"

my shortbox chev has a c30 frame under it

go for it if you are certain you want a short wheel base
I am looking to increase my wheelbase by pushing front axle forward and rear axle back
long is better
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Old 01-15-2005, 11:25 AM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Small overhang is better, short wheelbase is better. Overhang is more important. I didn't realize they are already 130". in that case, hack out 2 feet to be cool. really get rid of the overhang though.
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Old 01-15-2005, 12:17 PM   #6 (permalink)
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make the cut like this / / (about 45* angles or so)
dont do vertical cuts. Figure out if you can sleeve the inside of the frame with some rectangle tube, this would be the strongest. If not just plate the outsides and top and bottom after welding the frame back together
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Old 01-15-2005, 01:31 PM   #7 (permalink)
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mine was done vertically and plates bolted inside the rails
no issues to report since 1995
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Old 01-15-2005, 02:14 PM   #8 (permalink)
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is it possible to blow all the spring mounts off the frame and slide everything forward?
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Old 01-15-2005, 03:09 PM   #9 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OneTonK5
is it possible to blow all the spring mounts off the frame and slide everything forward?
I know fords have a low rear axle hump and sometime in the distant future I will just be moving the spring mounts forward and doing a shackle flip, with a 4" lift I should have about the same axle to frame distance as stock height/stock location
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Old 01-15-2005, 03:45 PM   #10 (permalink)
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is it possible to blow all the spring mounts off the frame and slide everything forward?
yes but it looks very ugly
you can make it look factory cutting the straight section in the middle
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Old 01-15-2005, 04:14 PM   #11 (permalink)
 
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i'd fishmouth it or use diamond shaped plates to brace where you cut the frame after welding it back together
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Old 01-15-2005, 05:11 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kyle_22r
i'd fishmouth it or use diamond shaped plates to brace where you cut the frame after welding it back together

Definatly do this. If you just butt weld the two ends together I dont think it would be that strong. The best way to go about doing it is like mentioned above, cut the ends like this // then after you weld them together plate it like this <> and you should be good to go. If you weld vertical or horizontial lines on the frame it will tend to be weak and stress crack at the welds.

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Old 01-15-2005, 08:02 PM   #13 (permalink)
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We have been talking about this over at ck5... there are two good threads
the bible on frame shortening ... and frame shortening...
both in the garage
all the answers are too long to put here so i suggest a visit might be worthwhile
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Old 01-15-2005, 08:16 PM   #14 (permalink)
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when I did my wheelbase shortning I remounted all the spring perches forwards, this will only work if you are lifting at the same time though because of the axle / frame interference issue. then I just bucked off the excess frame and remounted the last crossmember at the new back of the frame. worked fine and dosn't leave any questions as to weld strength cause there are none.
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Old 01-15-2005, 09:46 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Thanks fo rthe replies, I read a bunch of stuff over at ck5 and I know what is going on now. Thanks
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Old 01-16-2005, 03:47 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OneTonK5
is it possible to blow all the spring mounts off the frame and slide everything forward?
I did this with my 78 F250 frame, thinking it would be the easiest way to go.

I took the wheel base from 133" down to about 111". The front suspension is stock, but in the rear I used 63" Chebby leaves. I did a shackle reversal using the stock Chevy front spring hangers with a longer set of shackles.

The problem I had was that the frame angles in just in front of where the original front spring hangers were at. So, I had to build new front hangers to take in for the difference.

I didn't worry about the hump in the frame...for me, the springs go negative arch before they hit, so it isn't an issue.
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Old 01-16-2005, 04:07 PM   #17 (permalink)
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I did this on a '75 f250 by moving the spring mounts forward to give it a wheelbase of 115". I also installed a 4" lift at the time so as not to interfere with the frame.
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